To the Editor:
This week, the Connecticut General Assembly will officially convene the 2018 “short session” which goes from the first week in February through the first week in May. As you may remember, the 2017 legislative session continued far past the June deadline into late fall. However, the end result was not all bad since our towns were able to have almost all their municipal funding restored after the governor proposed eliminating nearly 100 percent of it.
A major priority of this session will be adjustments to the two-year state budget and will affect every resident in Connecticut. As a member of the Appropriations Committee, I will be heavily involved in making these adjustments, especially since we face a projected $245 million deficit that must be addressed. I serve on several subcommittees on Appropriations that deal with public safety, transportation, health, and hospital spending.The priority for me is to find areas of savings to help balance our budget without severely impacting core social services or negatively impacting our core functions of government like public safety.
As the legislature prepares for this session, solving the persistent deficit our state faces must be at the forefront of the conversation because of the adverse effects these problems have on business interests and job growth here.
We made modest strides toward this end last year with the adoption of a bipartisan state budget that includes structural changes like a constitutionally mandated spending cap and a bonding cap, as well as certain forms of municipal mandate relief. If Connecticut businesses are to compete nationally, major changes need to be made over the course of this session. I will continue fighting for these changes in the legislature and for policies that prioritize taxpayers over state bureaucracy.
Legislators are able to propose specific bills this year that they request from specific committees. Since I was first elected, I have proposed bills that I thought would help Monroe and Newtown residents as well as people across the state. Many bills I introduce originate from constituents who contact me with an idea, often at town hall forums in the district, so if you have an idea, feel free to let me know.
I also want to remind you that as your state representative, I am to serve as your resource in Hartford. I can help if you are having a problem with a state agency or if you simply have a question about a state law or process. We can work together and find ways for state government to better serve you, your family, or your business.
Please contact my office with any questions about state issues, or how to acquire an official citation, proclamation or flag to commemorate a significant achievement or life event.
I continue to be grateful to have this opportunity to serve in our state’s legislature representing the 112th district of Monroe and Newtown. You can reach me anytime at 800-842-1423 or by e-mail at JP.Sredzinski@housegop.ct.gov.
300 Capitol Avenue, Hartford February 5, 2018